Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Dog Soldiers

Dog Soldiers (2002)

Written and Directed by: Neil Marshall
Starring: Kevin McKidd, Sean Pertwee, Emma Cleasby, Liam Cunningham, Thomas Lockyer, Darren Morfitt, Chris Robsen, Leslie Simpson, Vilrikke's Acer

Always kind of wanted to see this movie, especially after I saw The Descent, which was pretty okay. Also werewolves are probably my favourite monster.

This is about a bunch of soldiers who believe they are on a routine training mission in the North of Scotland. Little do they know, they are actually bait for a family of werewolves living out in the woods which the army wants to capture and use for experiments or some damn thing.

The film takes a while to really get going, introducing the characters (who really weren't that interesting - I mean, I never really thought of them as any more than 'werewolf fodder' and did not lament at their passing) and I guess setting stuff up.

When it does get going, it turns into a fairly well done 'throat-ripping monsters in the woods' movie (the box cover says it's comparable to Predator which, though true, is not necessarily something you want to advertise).

I guess the film is supposed to have a slightly humourous tone, though I didn't really find it all that amusing (the newspaper headlines at the end of the movie did tickle me somewhat, although there's no way England would beat Germany 5-1).

I didn't find it particularly scary, though, either. The Descent suffers from many of the same problems as this one, although I sort of found those weird goblin things startling when first we saw them. The werewolves just looked kind of... stupid. This is often a problem with werewolf movies, as they haven't really seemed to come up with a way of doing that stuff yet.

Like I said, the characters weren't particularly compelling (they weren't really characters so much as stereotypes - 'the main character'; 'the tough girl'; 'the evil-for-no-reason Captain'; 'Mr. Trigger Happy'; 'the Goat' et cetera) and the plot was completely predictable.

There are lots of pop culture references which make those of us in the know feel very smug and then promptly kick ourselves for our smugness.

So I thought it was alright. Not really great by any means but I guess for what it was it was kind of okay.


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